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AUTOMATION / LIGHTING

Its On: Belkin WeMo Smart Home

By Oonagh Reidy | Wednesday | 09/10/2013

Lights, camera, home automation: Belkins WeMo Smart Home turns on in OZ

Belkins WeMo smart home platform was unveiled in OZ today including: WeMo Switch + Motion, Light Switch and NetCam for a cost effective, and simple to install home automation devices, run off WiFi network.

Belkin Australia WeMo family can be controlled via iOS (iPhone, iPad, iPod touch) or Android devices (no Windows app yet) from WeMo app. 

 

Demoed at the Sydney home of Belkin's Head of Marketing, Brendan Sparks, who showed how the WeMo platform has been integrated into his home, and how it works in the light of day.

Belkin want to make it easy to use home automation - and inexpensive, he says.

The Switch + Motion, Light Switch lets you control any appliance, TV, kettle to home lighting from your smartphone or tablet. You can also set timers, rules based on usage.

The new Belkin Switch costs $59.95, while the Switch + Motion costs $119.95.

Home automation is no longer hard or pricey. "You've got WiFi, a home device...you've got home automation", says Sparks. "It really does add to my world".

"Belkin's ethos is technology for people, that's easy".

WeMo Switch
The WeMo Switch plugs directly into any power socket and acts as the main building block for WeMo platform. Any appliance can be plugged in, turned on/off from anywhere, controlled remotely via the mobile app.

The app also enables users to put devices on a timed schedule, so turn on anything from the TV to lights at pre-set times.

The WeMo Switch + Motion ($119) goes a step further and adds a sensor that detects activity within 3 metres and will turn on or off anything from lamps to the kettle, TV based on movement.  If a household has young kids the sensors will turn on the lights at night if a child is trying to get to the toilet.

You can also set rules like turning off a lamp if there is no motion in the room after 10 minutes. It has 120 degrees motion sensitivity range.

WeMo integrates with IFTTT,  an online service that sets automated tasks combining different internet services, email, weather, phone calls, Twitter, Facebook.

There are also other very cool additions to the WeMo family coming in 2014 that will turn WeMo into a fully fledged automated home, but more will be revealed by the Belkin-ers soon.

WeMo Light Switch

Light Switch

Belkin's WiFi connected Light Switch ($69) lets you remotely manage, turn on/off household lights from anywhere via the WeMo app.

The little white box replaces an existing light switch and connects into a home's existing electrical wiring, which is where Belkin OZ has partnered up with Jim's Electrical nationally to do cost effective installs, which start at $40 each, comes in handy.

You can also do other clever stuff like set timers and rules on Switch - like if you want the lights in the kitchen to come on at sunrise and sunset. Its sensors can be programmed to be as highly sensitive as you like - lights can be commanded to come on whenever there is any movement.

There also a major security function to these smart home devices. Considering the massive energy prices in Australia, this system is a great way to monitor power bills and ensure lights are never left on when not in use. The app also measures energy usage giving householders ideas of how to manage energy consumption.

It works with any Wi-Fi router, 3G or 4G. It is available from late October.

Belkin NetCam

Belkin NetCam costs $99, with the HD version coming in January for $119.

 

The NetCam is good for security and can also be used as a child monitor, as Sparks demoed in his Dural home. NetCam lets you check in on what happening at home remotely from any mobile device via live video. The low cost security camera runs via Wifi network or watch it via 3G, 4G.

It comes with a separate app. It has 'night vision' to capture footage even if there's no lights, and digital sound. This clever camera will even send alerts via emails if it detects movement in the home.

WeMo Switch (F7C027auAPL) - $59.95

. A plug that becomes a programmable on and off switch for any household device. Operates over Wi-Fi and mobile Internet, at home and away

. Creates schedules for devices to turn on or off

. Can work in tandem with WeMo Motion, or as a stand-alone product

. Requires free WeMo app

. Works with an existing Wi-Fi network and any iOS devices (v5.0 or higher)

. WeMo app is iOS only, not Android compatible

. Modular system makes it easy to add additional WeMo devices

WeMo Switch + Motion (F5Z0340auAPL) - $119.95

. Detects movement, and devices plugged into the WeMo Motion can be programmed to react to motion

. 2 metre power cord and 3 metre, 120 degrees motion sensitivity range allow for optimal placement of sensor

. Operates over Wi-Fi and mobile Internet, at home and away

. Requires free WeMo app

. Works with an existing Wi-Fi network and any iOS devices (v5.0 or higher)

. WeMo app is iOS only, not Android compatible

. Modular system makes it easy to add additional WeMo devices

. Motion sensor sold bundled with WeMo Switch, not available separately WeMo Light Switch (F7C030au) $69.95

. Control household lighting remotely via a smartphone or tablet

. Works with any Wi-Fi router, Apple device with iOS v5 or higher, and Android device 4.0 or higher. Operates over Wi-Fi and mobile Internet, at home and away . Works with the free WeMo app

. No subscription fee or hub required

 

Launched earlier this year, Belkin WeMo Baby (F8J007) $99.95.

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